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Students March to Raise Awareness for Immigration Reform

More than 100 Loyola Marymount University students and faculty took part in Unity March for Just and Humane Immigration Reform on campus March 25. 

The crowd marched from O’Malley lawn to Alumni Mall, where participants cited the importance of immigration reform and the reasons behind Immigration Awareness Month. Marcela Hernandez ’11, member of MEChA – Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/Chicano de Aztlan – said the goal of the designated month and the march was to raise awareness and to empower the LMU community to take action. 

“Sometimes we are able to recognize the problems all around the world but we are not able to recognize those injustices that happen in our backyard,” Hernandez said. “I have seen how many of my friends are at the top of their high school classes but cannot attend college because they don’t have a Social Security number. It’s because of this system that they cannot reach their dreams.”

Incoming ASLMU vice president David Acevedo ’11 told the crowd that standing for those that do not have a voice follows the LMU mission of promoting social justice. Marty Roers, Campus Ministry’s minister of social justice, spoke about how LMU’s traditions obligate all Christians to stand up for those who are marginalized. A guest representative from the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles explained how students could take action and continue to push for comprehensive immigration reform.

The student-led demonstration was the closing event for Immigration Awareness Month, sponsored by MEChA de LMU, CHIRLA, Campus Ministry, Chicana/o Latino Student Services, Asian Pacific Student Services, the Department of Chicana/o Studies, De Colores, LMU service organizations, IDEAS, and ASLMU.

Hernandez added, “I hope Immigration Awareness Month and our concluding demonstration helped the LMU community gain an understanding of the importance of the issue, but more important, that they have the power to speak for 12 million people that are currently being oppressed by an ineffective system.”

Posted March 29, 2010